Why do it?

Water can be calming and fun.

Skills are developed by:

  • pouring
  • measuring
  • filling
  • emptying
  • splashing
  • swirling
  • floating.

How to do it

Play safe — water play needs a watching adult. A child can drown in just 5cm of water.

Water play can be:

  • washing dishes
  • watering the garden
  • blowing bubbles
  • walking in the rain
  • splashing in puddles
  • bathing dolls
  • paddling in the waves
  • having a tea party
  • racing waka
  • washing the car
  • having a bath.

Use buckets, basins, babies’ baths, sieves, hoses and plastic containers.

Have objects that float or sink.

Using more te reo Māori

Ringi Pour
Wai Water
Ngongo wai Water hose
Ua Rain
Awa River
Hōpua Pool
Kapua Cloud
Tōhihi Puddle of water
Pāpaku Shallow
Tātari Strainer, colander
Horoi Wash
Kaukau Bathe
Tāre Doll
Pākete Bucket
Hoea Paddle
Waka Boat
Utuhia Fill a container
Whakapiakotia To empty out
Kārapu Splash
Patapata Drip
Pūrewa, teretere To float, be buoyant
Takawiri Cork
Totohu To sink
Kia mataara To be alert, vigilant
Kia tūpato Be careful
Kamupūtu Gumboots
Mirumiru Bubbles
Pōrutu Splashing with hands
He mahana tēnei wai This water is warm
He makariri tēnei wai This water is cold
Tangohia ō poraka Take off your jersey
Kei te mākū koe? Are you wet?
Homai te tāora Pass me the towel